back to top
Style

We Finally Tried Trader Joe's Skin Care Products

Is grocery store skin care actually worthwhile? We found out.

Posted on

Trader Joe's lovers already know what delicious food lies inside the grocery store's doors. But what about Trader Joe's skin care products? Are they as magical as the Cookie Butter?

Advertisement

Wanting to know if we could officially turn Trader Joe's into our one-stop shop for all of our daily needs, we decided to test five Trader Joe's skin care products. Here are our testers:

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

To figure out which products might be the best ones to test (and which ones would be the best for our different skin types), we got the help of Dr. Dendy E. Engelman, a dermatologist. She helped guide us on our quest for radiant skin. Here's what she had to say about each product we tested. (All prices listed are in-store prices.)

All-in-One Facial Cleanser, $5.99: Best for normal, combination, or acne-prone skin. The cocamidopropyl betaine is a surfactant that can cause drying, so best avoided in dry skin types.

Face Wash With Tea Tree Oil, $5.49: Best for all skin types, especially those who are oily or acne prone or for those with rosacea. Tea tree oil is anti-inflammatory, so it calms down acne flares or those with underlying facial redness.

Antioxidant Facial Serum, $9.99: Best for oily, normal skin. The retinol and retinyl palmitate may be too harsh for dry or rosacea-prone skin types.

Moisturizing Balm, $3.99: Best for those with chapped lips and dry elbows, knees, heels, and hands.

Moisturizing Cream, $3.99: Best for dry, non-facial skin. The glycerin in the product makes it better for the body rather than the face as it can have the tendency to cause breakouts or irritation in some patients.

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

1. Each tester would try the product specific to their skin care needs for two weeks.

2. While using the product, we could not use a similar product at the same time.

3. At the end, we would each rate the product, one jar of Cookie Butter being the worst and five jars of Cookie Butter being the best.

Casey tried the All-In-One Facial Cleanser:

Casey's thoughts going in: I live that combination skin life, which means I'm constantly battling those oily T-zones. I usually just buy whatever cleanser is on sale at CVS, but my heart and soul belong to Trader Joe's, so I was beyond excited to test out the cleanser.

What she likes about the cleanser: It does what it says it does. It's a cleanser through and through and it washes away the grime from the day.

What she doesn't like about the cleanser: You know those cheesy and great commercials where a woman is getting ready in the morning and she is immediately invigorated after splashing water and some type of cleanser on her face? This is not that type of product. TJ's cleanser is soapy and thin and kind of just falls off of your face. I also don't like it because it's not Cookie Butter, but that's not the cleanser's fault. It's Trader Joe's fault for making such a delicious product.

Would she buy it again?: Maybe.* I think my skin would have eventually become good friends with the cleanser, but I think I'm looking for something that makes me feel like a luxurious queen.

*I would probably buy it to help my Cookie Butter-induced breakout.

Advertisement

Sheridan tried the Face Wash With Tea Tree Oil:

Sheridan's thoughts going in: It could be the stress of planning a wedding, my hormones getting jacked up, or just the world turning against me, but I have had the worst acne the past few months. Like, red, hidden-treasure-beneath-the-surface kind of bumps. I heard that tea tree oil was good for acne, and honestly I'm at the point where I'll try anything.

What she likes about the face wash: Man, oh man, it was just one of those products where you really felt clean afterward. I love a good fucking tingly face wash. Also, I didn't have to use a lot — just a small pump and it lathered up real nice all over my face. I felt like I was in a spa!

What she doesn't like about the face wash: It was super, super watery. Just slipping out of my hands, squirting into my eyes kind of watery. When you're trying to wash your forehead and it runs down into your eyes, it pretty much sucks.

Would she buy it again?: Yes. It's really hard for me to get that clean-face feeling without using a scrub or my Clarisonic, so I really liked how this soft of a cleanser made me feel like a newborn baby's butt after showering.

Lara tried the Antioxidant Facial Serum:

Lara's thoughts going in: I have OILY ASS skin but I also try to moisturize a lot because I think I read that I should in a magazine or something. I wanted a different kind of product that wouldn't oil me up like coconut oil but also wouldn't leave my skin yearning for more. Something I could put on in the morning without looking like I hadn't showered in 17 days.

What she likes about the serum: I loved the feeling of putting this on my face after a shower in the morning. It was so smooth and soft and I'm pretty sure my cheeks felt like the cheeks of a baby, but I didn't have a baby cheek to compare.

What she doesn't like about the serum: It caused me to break out. I was using it once a day when, after four days of use, I started to get massive, under-the-skin, painful pimples. I stopped it for a day or two then started up again and got another one, which makes me think it was the serum that was causing the breakout. It doesn't matter how soft my skin felt because I don't forgive painful pimples.

Would she buy it again?: I would not. I mean, I love the idea of it, and I love the feeling of my skin five minutes in, but a week in and I'll have pimples again. NO THANK YOU. I already have a period doing this for me, I don't need a serum doing it also.

Nina tried the Moisturizing Balm:

Nina's thoughts going in: My lips are drier than a desert. I know I shouldn't do this, but I'm ALWAYS licking them because I'm too lazy to reach into my bag for my lip balm. I've been using Burt's Bees for years now and I wanted to see what another brand would do for me.

What she likes about the balm: I like that there's a lot of it. And it seemingly kept my lips moister for a bit longer than my usual lip balm. I also liked that it was versatile enough to be used on multiple body parts, not just your lips!

What she doesn't like about the balm: The tin is kind of too large for me. I carry a very small purse when I go out at night that can't hold a large tin like that, so I found myself going out without it and suffering through chapped lips. There's something about opening a big round tin JUST to put some balm on your lips that feels...inconvenient. Also I'm not a fan of the smell. It smells a little like patchouli, and so does my grandmother, but it's way more endearing on her.

Would she buy it again?: No. It just doesn't feel convenient. And even though you CAN use it on your elbows and knees or whatever, I definitely didn't. IDK there's just something about putting a non-liquidy balm on your joint skin that feels weird to me.

Nina tried the Moisturizing Cream:

Nina's thoughts going in: My skin in general is pretty dry. I tend to get ashy. I hate walking around looking like an elephant, so I was pretty excited to use this product. I normally use some Vaseline-brand lotion, and that's worked pretty well for me, but I'm always here to try new things.

What she likes about the moisturizing cream: I liked that it helped my skin not be dry. The packaging is pretty, too. That's about it.

What she doesn't like about the moisturizing cream: I'm used to a much more liquid-y lotion. This felt a little too globby for my taste. It took a lot of work to really blend it into my skin. Maybe that made it work better, but I don't think it had any long-lasting effects.

Would she buy it again?: Nah, it definitely felt like a cheap product. I'll pay the extra dollar for a more quality product. Never thought I'd say that about Vaseline.

Promoted

Every. Tasty. Video. EVER. The new Tasty app is here!

Dismiss